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Tuesday in Hawkville: Bobby Wagner, K.J. Wright drawing the line for Seahawks defense

Posted Nov 19, 2013

With 29 and 25 tackles the past three games, respectively, linebackers Bobby Wagner and K.J. Wright are giving free safety Earl Thomas a run in the competition to lead the defense in tackles.


A recap of the activities at Virginia Mason Athletic Center for Nov. 19, when the players were “off” for the first of six consecutive days during their bye week:

WORD OF THE DAY: LINEBACKERS

Or to be more specific, middle linebacker Bobby Wagner and weak-side linebacker K.J. Wright.

They led Sunday’s defensive effort against the Minnesota Vikings with nine tackles each – six solo and three assists for Wagner; four solo and five assists for Wright. Wagner’s total included a sack and he also intercepted a pass to setup a touchdown. Wright combined with defensive tackle Tony McDonald and strong safety Kam Chancellor to stop Adrian Peterson for gains of 1 yard and 2 yards to open the Vikings’ second possession and also dropped tight end John Carlson for a 1-yard loss on a third-and-1 reception to end the Vikings’ first possession of the second half.

Wagner missed two games with a sprained ankle, but has been better by the game in the four since his return.

YOU DON'T SAY

“The Seahawks are a buzz saw at home and as tough as any team in the NFL. So who is going to stop them in the playoffs?”

SI.com, in ranking the Seahawks the best team in the NFC

“He’s at his best right now,” coach Pete Carroll said during his weekly day-after Q&A session with the media. “I think it took him a couple weeks. He missed a couple and it took him really a couple to get back going.

“He played really well. K.J. was really on it. And Kam was a big factor, too. So all of those guys were all contributing to it. You could just see the intensity and the aggressiveness, and we owned the line of scrimmage we felt against Adrian in really good fashion.”

Their efforts against the Vikings and Peterson, who ran for 182 yards against the Seahawks in Week 9 last season but was held to 65 on Sunday, also has increased the competition to lead the defense in tackles.

Wagner led the team in tackles as a rookie last season and was the leader this season before missing two games, when free safety Earl Thomas moved past him. But Wagner has 29 the past three games to given him 69 for the season – six behind Thomas. Wright is in between them with 71, including 25 in past three games. Chancellor, who had eight tackles against the Vikings, is fourth on the team with 57.

REMEMBERING MIKE McCORMACK

To honor the man who served as Seahawks director of football operations, interim coach and general manager from 1982-89, the 12th Man Flag at VMAC is at half-mast. McCormack died last Friday. He was 83.

“Mike was the real deal,” said John Nordstrom, the managing partner during McCormack’s time with the Seahawks.

STATS ’N STUFF: STEVEN HAUSCHKA, MARSHAWN LYNCH MAKING THEIR POINTS

Steven Hauschka continues to lead the NFL in scoring with 104 points, and still has missed only one kick all season – a 48-yard field goal attempt that was blocked.

STAT DU JOUR: STREAKING, SEAHAWKS STYLE

The Seahawks’ current six-game winning streak is the third longest in club history for a single season, behind only 2005 and 1984 teams that used their winning streaks to post the franchise’s best records – 13-3 in ’05 and 12-4 in ’84. Here’s a look at the Seahawks’ longest single-season winning streaks:

Year Consecutive wins
2005 11
1984 8
2013 6
1986 5
1999 5
2007 5
2012 5

Note: The six consecutive wins this season have topped the victory totals of seven previous teams – 1976, 1977, 1980, 1982, 1992, 2008 and 2009; and equaled the total of four others – 1981, 1993, 1994 and 2000. 

In his typical low-key fashion, Hauschka offered, “That’s because we’ve played more games than most teams.” That the Seahawks have, but still …

Marshawn Lynch’s three-touchdown performance in Sunday’s win over the Vikings lifted him into a tie for the scoring lead among non-kickers. He and Lions’ wide receiver Calvin Johnson have 66 points – Lynch on nine rushing TDs and two receiving; Johnson on 11 TD catches. Lynch also is tied for the league lead in rushing touchdowns with Peterson.

Lynch also remains second in the league in rushing (925 yards), is fourth in total yards (1,147) and third in first downs (61, 53 rushing and eight receiving). His 53 rushing first downs lead the league.

The All-Pro duo of Thomas and cornerback Richard Sherman are tied for second in interceptions with four each.

Russell Wilson’s career-best 151.3 passer rating against the Vikings boosted his season rating to 105.1, which is fifth in the league behind the Eagles’ Nick Foles (128.0), Broncos’ Peyton Manning (118.3), Packers’ Aaron Rodgers (108.0) and Saints’ Drew Brees (106.7). Nick Foles? He has thrown 16 TD passes and no interceptions. Wilson also is ninth in fourth-quarter passer rating (93.8), where the league leader is another surprise – the Bears’ Josh McCown (122.2); and 10th in third-down passer rating (88.0), where the leader in the Panthers’ Cam Newton (111.9).

Golden Tate continues to rank fifth in punt return average (12.9), while Hauschka is tied for fifth in touchbacks (37).

As a team, the Seahawks lead the league with 26 takeaways and they’re tied for the lead with 16 interceptions. Sunday’s four-turnover performance by the defense lifted the Seahawks to plus-11 in turnover differential, which ties for second in the league. The defense also ranks second in average yards allowed (293.3), second in passing yards allowed (180.4)and 15th in rushing yards allowed (112.9); while the offense is third in rushing yards (147.9), 12th overall (358.5) and 24th in passing yards (210.5).

UP NEXT: THE LONG GOOD BYE

With the players “off” until next Monday, when they return to begin preparing for the Dec. 2 “Monday Night Football” game against the Saints at CenturyLink Field, the daily “Hawkville” reports will go dark until the boys the back in town.

Game Rewind: Seattle Seahawks